One year later - how are we feeling?

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LateReg
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby LateReg » Mon Aug 27, 2018 1:49 pm

I had pontificated that the dreamer was the viewer as the show was airing. There's a lot of evidence of this, and it is certainly one path worth following in a show that suggest multiple levels of reality and intersecting realities and more and more frequently throughout addresses our own "reality" here in the real world. Specifically, when Mr. C is grilling Jeffries about "Who is Judy?!" it very much felt like he was a stand-in for the audience, demanding answers, writing the show into existence; that occurring in Part 15, just after Monica Belluci appeared as herself and asked the dreamer question in Part 14, addressing it to the director of the film no less. The same with Audrey's "You're not gonna tell me what she said?!"

Very interesting thoughts, pinball and Reindeer. Thanks.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby Saturn's child » Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:16 am

pinballmars wrote:... it reminds me of a recurring dream I've had for awhile in which I'm riding a bicycle around my old neighborhood (a place I haven't, in reality, visited in years). In the dream, I'm an adult and there are no people around. Lots of parked cars, lots of houses. The little pond is still there. It looks exactly like it did in 1987 when I was 11. And I'm just a guy in his 40s riding a bike. That's it. Nothing else happens.

But I wake up strangely sad and I can't explain why. Something about going back home and finding only a yawning void, I guess.

Sounds like the whole point of Episode 18, to me.


This is great, thanks for sharing. I think it's as good an interpretation of 18 as any. God, that last part was incredible; as much as I was blown away by 3 & 8, part 18 was the one that had me uncontrollably grinning throughout the entire episode.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby Mr. Strawberry » Tue Aug 28, 2018 3:10 pm

I'm having trouble summing up and transcribing my feelings on Season 3. In the meantime I'd like to respond to the following:


IcedOver wrote:I occasionally look at scenes and find that, even though my feelings fluctuate on many aspects, the one where they have remained constant is on the cinematography. I can't stand it and feel that the show was immeasurably damaged by the decision to go not just digital but such a clear, hi-def digital. Even the B&W of Part 8 doesn't look that great, far too clear and crisp.

What a shame that it wasn't shot on the same medium as the preceding material.

To me, film captures reality, while digital captures details, and by that I mean one could say that film is how the mind's eye sees, while digital is what is really there. It's very detailed but lacks a certain spirit.

I think the reason this difference isn't as striking when it comes to still photographs is because we do not see still images but rather a constant motion, thus when we see footage we are seeing the world in motion, just as we do around us every day, and discrepancies stand out much more than they ever would when viewing a still image which is unnatural to begin with.

They could have taken it a step further and used not only film, but also the same exact cameras, lights and other technology that was used to create the original show. Of course story is the most important aspect, but in visual storytelling, consistency matters too. When it comes to Twin Peaks, visuals are a close second to story. I was very disappointed by the decision to go digital.


IcedOver wrote:If they had shot on film (I know, unlikely for budget reasons) or just taken a different tack with their choices, the show would have been helped. Stuff is too bright; it needed degraded, shot with a camcorder.

It boggles the mind. I fail to see how shooting the original made for television series on film was doable at the time, but not 25 years later when the demand for and potential profitability from more Peaks, arguably the greatest show ever made, is so much more prominent than it was back then.
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mtwentz
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby mtwentz » Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:46 pm

Digital vs. film is a personal preference; I'm not sure one can be said to be 'better' than the other. As for me, I can't even tell the difference, or at least I don't notice it.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby AgentEcho » Tue Aug 28, 2018 5:09 pm

Mr. Strawberry wrote:It boggles the mind. I fail to see how shooting the original made for television series on film was doable at the time, but not 25 years later when the demand for and potential profitability from more Peaks, arguably the greatest show ever made, is so much more prominent than it was back then.


This is just a matter of advancing technology and an evolving industry. 25 years ago, as was more or less the case throughout the history of film and television until about 16 or 17 years ago, there was no viable alternative to film. There was such a drop off to shooting on video that it was well worth the expense to shoot on film. And film was the industry standard, so there was an established infrastructure for creating, selling, and processing film stock. HD digital came around in the early 2000's and offered a viable alternative to film, and eventually it started replacing the infrastructure. So now shooting on film, especially for a television show, is pretty much isolated to content creators who are film purists. Which Lynch has not been for some time.

I tend to agree that the cinematography looks too digital, especially for certain scenes. Every once in a while that uncanny digital crispness would take me a bit out of a scene (for the record, I still notice this on the Blu-Ray). The thing is, almost everything on television and most films are shot on digital, and I notice this far more on Twin Peaks than anything else I watch. I never notice it on Better Call Saul for example, a show that is shot digital, and is a prequel to a show shot on film. One of the advantages of digital is the flexibility in post... they can tweak the image to the point where it looks close enough to film that only the most trained eyes could notice the difference. I'm fairly certain Lynch chose not to tweak the image for season 3 to reduce the visual tells of digital cinematography (particularly the crispness... and sometimes I wonder what frame rate it was shot at). It's in keeping with his thought process going back to when he was infatuated with the SD camera, the PD-150, long after it was an obsolete camera in the industry.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby mtwentz » Tue Aug 28, 2018 5:26 pm

AgentEcho wrote:
Mr. Strawberry wrote:
I tend to agree that the cinematography looks too digital, especially for certain scenes. Every once in a while that uncanny digital crispness would take me a bit out of a scene (for the record, I still notice this on the Blu-Ray). The thing is, almost everything on television and most films are shot on digital, and I notice this far more on Twin Peaks than anything else I watch. I never notice it on Better Call Saul for example, a show that is shot digital, and is a prequel to a show shot on film. One of the advantages of digital is the flexibility in post... they can tweak the image to the point where it looks close enough to film that only the most trained eyes could notice the difference. I'm fairly certain Lynch chose not to tweak the image for season 3 to reduce the visual tells of digital cinematography (particularly the crispness... and sometimes I wonder what frame rate it was shot at). It's in keeping with his thought process going back to when he was infatuated with the SD camera, the PD-150, long after it was an obsolete camera in the industry.


What do you mean, 'looks too digital'? Is film inherently 'better' than digital, or is it because we grew up on film, our eyes are still more accustomed to film grain?

Would someone who grew up on digital, then later in life was introduced to film, also see film as superior to digital?

Since I don't readily notice the differences, it's hard for me to answer those questions.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby AgentEcho » Tue Aug 28, 2018 6:24 pm

mtwentz wrote:What do you mean, 'looks too digital'? Is film inherently 'better' than digital, or is it because we grew up on film, our eyes are still more accustomed to film grain?

Would someone who grew up on digital, then later in life was introduced to film, also see film as superior to digital?

Since I don't readily notice the differences, it's hard for me to answer those questions.


I'm not really arguing that film is better than digital, for the record. When I say "looks too digital" I just mean I noticed many tells that the cinematography was obviously shot with digital cameras, and generally most digital cinematography processes those out in post. I mentioned the crispness, but to elaborate on why I wonder about the frame rate, there was something about the way things moved in certain scenes that reminded me of the terrible "tru-motion" "smooth-motion" feature that is turned on by default on modern televisions. Usually this is caused by things moving too crisply than we would normally be able to perceive in real life (reduced motion blur of higher frame rates can look odd).

But there's tons of digital cinematography out there where these things are not apparent. I'd argue most digital cinematography in films and prestige television don't have these factors, because of how they are processed in post. I think Lynch chose not too, and it's one of the few creative choices of season 3 that I didn't care for. I mentioned Better Call Saul, but I could list of probably a dozen examples from mainstream television. David Fincher is my opinion one of the best mainstream directors working today, and he's been exclusively shooting on digital about the past decade, and all his work looks terrific, and none of it has that uncanny quality of unprocessed digital. So this is more about how the digital was processed than saying anything about digital vs. film.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby LateReg » Thu Aug 30, 2018 8:17 am

As I've said before, I was at first put off by the cinematography as I wasn't quite sure what I was watching and it did look overly digital, but it grew on me over time and I came to think of the show as the most arresting looking thing on TV. Part of this realization had to do with the stills that accompanied articles/reviews of the episodes - all the stills looked so much better than what I was seeing in motion! My brain eventually bridged the gap there and I began to comprehend what I was seeing in a different light. On Blu-ray, it looks amazing. Yes, there are certain shots where the image is plainly digital, but I appreciate that too. And AgentEcho is right, of course. This was a very conscious decision to shoot digital and NOT try to make it look like film, to not fake it like everyone else does. That's part of what makes it stand out. It's beautiful to me regardless, a very subtle image in many cases with beautiful lighting (especially in but not limited to the Sheriff's office), and from an ideological point of view makes perfect sense when Lynch is trying to show every detail of aging (there's no hiding from digital) and is against romanticizing the past, which shooting on film may have done; the digital presents a harsher, more immediate reality in this sense. None of this is to say that I didn't want him to shoot on film, nor that film wouldn't have been a better choice. I did want him to shoot on film, which I love and would have made for a true "return." But what we got instead fits what The Return is all about, and even many of the earliest reviews acknowledged how the new look shapes the feeling of the new series. We're ushered out of the past and into the colder, surveillance-heavy now. But it's not just that, for as I said, I also find it to be beautiful in its subtlety. I love it.
Last edited by LateReg on Thu Aug 30, 2018 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby N. Needleman » Thu Aug 30, 2018 8:45 pm

As agonizing as a lot of part 12(?) was, I couldn't help guffawing at the torturous French girl/Audrey scenes even as I groaned. They were very, very deliberately made. The more confounding the Audrey scene got the more hysterical I became. By the time Charlie pulled out a rotary phone(!!) and then Audrey finally speaks for the audience and blurts out "you're not gonna tell me what she said??" I was in tears of laughter.

I love Season 3 and I love the bizarre, inconclusive Audrey plotline that later developed - I think it is integral to the whole - but that whole interlude is an exercise in mortifying comedy.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby AgentEcho » Fri Aug 31, 2018 6:12 am

LateReg wrote:As I've said before, I was at first put off by the cinematography as I wasn't quite sure what I was watching and it did look overly digital, but it grew on me over time and I came to think of the show as the most arresting looking thing on TV. Part of this realization had to do with the stills that accompanied articles/reviews of the episodes - all the stills looked so much better than what I was seeing in motion! My brain eventually bridged the gap there and I began to comprehend what I was seeing in a different light. On Blu-ray, it looks amazing. Yes, there are certain shots where the image is plainly digital, but I appreciate that too. And AgentEcho is right, of course. This was a very conscious decision to shoot digital and NOT try to make it look like film, to not fake it like everyone else does. That's part of what makes it stand out. It's beautiful to me regardless, a very subtle image in many cases with beautiful lighting (especially in but not limited to the Sheriff's office), and from an ideological point of view makes perfect sense when Lynch is trying to show every detail of aging (there's no hiding from digital) and is against romanticizing the past, which shooting on film may have done; the digital presents a harsher, more immediate reality in this sense. None of this is to say that I didn't want him to shoot on film, nor that film wouldn't have been a better choice. I did want him to shoot on film, which I love and would have made for a true "return." But what we got instead fits what The Return is all about, and even many of the earliest reviews acknowledged how the new look shapes the feeling of the new series. We're ushered out of the past and into the colder, surveillance-heavy now. But it's not just that, for as I said, I also find it to be beautiful in its subtlety. I love it.



I wouldn't call it "faking it" when digital cinematography is processed to give it a certain look. What David Fincher does with digital isn't faking it, at least not in any sense where every aspect of filmmaking, whether on celluloid or digital, isn't faking it. Just about everything that's ever been shot professionally on digital or celluloid has been color graded or color timed in post, including Twin Peaks Season 3. Lynch isn't being "more real" with his decisions, he just did something different with it. IMO when other people color grade digital cinematography to the point that it looks closer to film, it's not about making it look like film, it's simply about getting the best image. I'll reiterate that I consider the post production flexibility of digital one of its key advantages over film, so in that sense you could argue Lynch is simply not utilizing the digital cinematography to its fullest potential (I wouldn't actually argue that, but I think it's a better argument that saying other types of grading decisions are "fake").

It's possible it may grow on me. No doubt I have an aversion to that uncanny clearness, especially when television makers create default filters on all new televisions that artificially boost this to a terrible degree (I have actually asked employees at restaurants where televisions are running with this filter to turn it off). But more often than not those moments when that uncanny digital harshness came through took me out of the experience more than it sucked me in.

But I will also say Season 3 had some incredibly striking cinematography. It had some of the best low light cinematography I've ever seen. I can't recall ever seeing an image like the one where, after the Log Lady dies and the light in her cabin goes out, you can still see detail like the outline of the cabin and the trees in a shot that is almost in complete darkness. The scene where Mr. C descends into the depths of the convenience store likewise had some stunning detail popping out in low light. None of those images would have been possible to capture on celluloid. (Ironically that convenience store scene also had moments when that uncanny crispness comes through, which is my only caveat with the way that scene looked, which was otherwise incredible).
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby mtwentz » Sun Sep 02, 2018 5:15 am

I am currently planning to buy the DVD set of The Return. I already own a digital copy and the Blu Ray. That, more than anything, expresses how I feel about The Return. I suspect I'll be doing many rewatches in the years to come.

That being said, I have one major disappointment: not addressing Annie's fate. Lynch wanted to work with Watts and Dern and Cooper to ultimately end up with Laura, so I understand why there was no room for Annie as a romantic interest for Cooper. However, I do feel that Cooper should have at least mentioned her in the last couple of episodes.

But that aside, I think that The Return really delivered for me in a way that no other show or movie has since the original run of Twin Peaks.
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LateReg
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby LateReg » Sun Sep 02, 2018 6:52 am

AgentEcho wrote:I wouldn't call it "faking it" when digital cinematography is processed to give it a certain look. What David Fincher does with digital isn't faking it, at least not in any sense where every aspect of filmmaking, whether on celluloid or digital, isn't faking it. Just about everything that's ever been shot professionally on digital or celluloid has been color graded or color timed in post, including Twin Peaks Season 3. Lynch isn't being "more real" with his decisions, he just did something different with it. IMO when other people color grade digital cinematography to the point that it looks closer to film, it's not about making it look like film, it's simply about getting the best image. I'll reiterate that I consider the post production flexibility of digital one of its key advantages over film, so in that sense you could argue Lynch is simply not utilizing the digital cinematography to its fullest potential (I wouldn't actually argue that, but I think it's a better argument that saying other types of grading decisions are "fake").

It's possible it may grow on me. No doubt I have an aversion to that uncanny clearness, especially when television makers create default filters on all new televisions that artificially boost this to a terrible degree (I have actually asked employees at restaurants where televisions are running with this filter to turn it off). But more often than not those moments when that uncanny digital harshness came through took me out of the experience more than it sucked me in.

But I will also say Season 3 had some incredibly striking cinematography. It had some of the best low light cinematography I've ever seen. I can't recall ever seeing an image like the one where, after the Log Lady dies and the light in her cabin goes out, you can still see detail like the outline of the cabin and the trees in a shot that is almost in complete darkness. The scene where Mr. C descends into the depths of the convenience store likewise had some stunning detail popping out in low light. None of those images would have been possible to capture on celluloid. (Ironically that convenience store scene also had moments when that uncanny crispness comes through, which is my only caveat with the way that scene looked, which was otherwise incredible).


I agree with all that. You may or may not have interpreted some condescension on my part when I said "fake it," but that's not at all what I meant. I simply meant that most digital cinematography is nearly indistinguishable from film because it is given a filmlike look. That's all. Whether or not the intention is to simply find the best look for the material, as you suggest, is another story, but I think that a lot of filmmakers definitely use digital to replicate film as much as possible because it is what our/their eye is used to. Fincher is for sure one of digital's best practitioners, and I love the look of his films/series. Along with Michael Mann, who appears the most interested of any major filmmaker outside of Lynch in the more purely digital texture of digital, Fincher is my favorite digital advocate. I'm not advocating for film or digital, and as you said digital has its definite advantages. You make some great observations about the low-lit scenes!

As far as Lynch's realness is concerned, going back to INLAND EMPIRE he's clearly been interested in using digital for its purely digital qualities (as well as its ease), and in the case of The Return those qualities are evidently at the forefront. The realness to me is about how the aesthetic is married to the themes, ie as I said, not hiding the lines of age in any of the characters, presenting them in all their aged detail, presenting a very real Twin Peaks region in the harsh light of day rather than a romanticized one, and the list goes on. By keeping it digital, I believe that Lynch is using the digital format to its absolute fullest potential just as much as Fincher, but in a different way. That said, I do think certain portions of The Return do look quite filmlike. Overall I'm just into what I'd accurately or inaccurately define as the more subtle grading of the thing that provides, to my eyes, a more interesting and alluring image in contrast to the 90% of everything else on TV and in cinemas that looks exactly the same (and usually happens to replicate a very filmlike look).
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby Jasper » Sun Sep 02, 2018 12:08 pm

AgentEcho wrote:The scene where Mr. C descends into the depths of the convenience store likewise had some stunning detail popping out in low light.


Mr. C walking across the motel courtyard was one of the most striking visuals in the entire production. Like a painting in black on black.

I remember a quote from Lynch where he was talking about painting and he said something about how the more black paint he'd use in a painting, the better it would be.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby AgentEcho » Mon Sep 03, 2018 7:26 am

LateReg wrote:I agree with all that. You may or may not have interpreted some condescension on my part when I said "fake it," but that's not at all what I meant. I simply meant that most digital cinematography is nearly indistinguishable from film because it is given a filmlike look. That's all. Whether or not the intention is to simply find the best look for the material, as you suggest, is another story, but I think that a lot of filmmakers definitely use digital to replicate film as much as possible because it is what our/their eye is used to. Fincher is for sure one of digital's best practitioners, and I love the look of his films/series. Along with Michael Mann, who appears the most interested of any major filmmaker outside of Lynch in the more purely digital texture of digital, Fincher is my favorite digital advocate. I'm not advocating for film or digital, and as you said digital has its definite advantages. You make some great observations about the low-lit scenes!

As far as Lynch's realness is concerned, going back to INLAND EMPIRE he's clearly been interested in using digital for its purely digital qualities (as well as its ease), and in the case of The Return those qualities are evidently at the forefront. The realness to me is about how the aesthetic is married to the themes, ie as I said, not hiding the lines of age in any of the characters, presenting them in all their aged detail, presenting a very real Twin Peaks region in the harsh light of day rather than a romanticized one, and the list goes on. By keeping it digital, I believe that Lynch is using the digital format to its absolute fullest potential just as much as Fincher, but in a different way. That said, I do think certain portions of The Return do look quite filmlike. Overall I'm just into what I'd accurately or inaccurately define as the more subtle grading of the thing that provides, to my eyes, a more interesting and alluring image in contrast to the 90% of everything else on TV and in cinemas that looks exactly the same (and usually happens to replicate a very filmlike look).


Appreciate the clarification, apologies for misinterpreting. I think you hit the nail on the head with the Inland Empire comparison. Taking that film and that period of interest Lynch had with SD digital very much informs what his thought process must have been when finally switching to HD digital.
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Re: One year later - how are we feeling?

Postby Andromedeaux » Wed Sep 19, 2018 9:17 pm

I am feeling that the Return has ruined the rest of TV and movies for me. I can't really watch anything else with sustained interest.

Better Call Saul is a solid show and Ladder 49 has some mystique but I still get bored. Still prefer to rewatch random episodes of the Return with a glass of the cheapest vino. I'm a basic Twin Peaks bitch.

Analysis doesn't fucking matter. I do enjoy reading fan theories and I consume them voraciously. If you've posted a theory here, on youtube or podcasted chances are I've seen your BS. I tried really really hard to decode the plane window code last year. But what matters most is scenes you can't get out of your head. Irreversible like thermodynamics. The Return is a fountain of these types of scenes. Great, great, great scenes as Lynch would say. Coop fondling Jack's mouth, Red flipping the dime, anything with Sam and Tracy, and yes "the sweep". It's a shame nobody else can make anything that is so terrible and awesome simultaneously. Take a fucking risk and make it obtuse and great so that it hangs around for years and appreciates like Mulholland Drive.

Lastly, I am mostly relieved that Twin Peaks got snubbed. Can you imagine Lynch getting some kind of lifetime achievement award at the Oscars or Emmys? It wouldn't do him justice. If he seeks that recognition, however, I suppose I would like to see it. I wonder.

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